News America’s rise and fall: Occupy Wall Street protesers march through New York City in 2011

Individual debts collectively worth millions are abolished for just $400,000

Father 'devastated' as missing chef Claudia Lawrence reward withdrawn

The father of missing chef Claudia Lawrence spoke today of his "devastation" as it was revealed that a cash reward for information was being dropped.

4,000 university places filled and 150,000 may miss out

More than 190,000 would-be students were scrambling for a rapidly diminishing number of university places today as clearing continued.

Take shorter breaks more often for the happiest time off

The best way to extract full value from a holiday is to interrupt it with some work, says a leisure study

Today, Edinburgh. Tomorrow, The World. Acts to look out for

The Fringe is where the stars of the future are found. But which of this year's crop are destined for the top? Alice Jones reports

Missing chef investigation scaled down

Police investigating the disappearance of chef Claudia Lawrence confirmed today they are scaling back the number of officers dedicated to the inquiry.

Kids, eh? Now they persist in being useful and contented

We should not fall for the stereotype of juvenile depravity, says Tim Lott. Things are looking up

Church of England debates further over women bishops

The Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams was facing another test of his authority today as the Church of England embarked on a further round of gruelling debates over the issue of women bishops.

Issue of women bishops threatens Church again

If anyone wanted a glimpse of the difficulty in keeping the Church of England together, they needed only to look at Dr Rowan Williams the last time the General Synod voted on women bishops: after hours of fractious debate inside York University's Central Hall in summer 2008, the Archbishop of Canterbury had his head in his hands.

Children, A bundle of joy?

We love them, of course, but new research suggests that having children makes us unhappy - it's just that none of us feels able to admit it. Susie Mesure (mother of Louis, two) investigates a taboo issue

Yasmin Alibhai-Brown: Where has all the love gone?

The burning flame of passionate mutuality is burning out as people obsessively chase ratings in the mating game

House searched by police in hunt for missing chef

Police investigating the disappearance of university chef Claudia Lawrence spent two days searching a house about 10 miles from her home as a result of a "recent development".

He's my best enemy: Things can turn nasty when brothers pick the same career

Jonathan Brown dissects the dynamics

Living proof that conservation works

Scientists say the fish threatened with extinction is back on the menu again

Suffolk discovers bright side of empty-net syndrome

It's a curious Catch 22: the collapse of British fishing stocks has put so many trawlermen out of business that those who survive face a glut.

Police 'disappointed' by criticisms of Claudia Lawrence inquiry

The police force investigating the suspected murder of missing chef Claudia Lawrence said today it was disappointed by criticisms about the "thorough, professional and challenging" inquiry.

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Barn owls are among species that could be affected
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Sarah Silverman (middle) with sister Reform Rabbi Susan Silverman (right) and sister actress Laura Silverman (left) at Jerusalem's Western Wall for feminist Hanuka candle-lighting ceremony
peopleControversial comedian stages pro-equality Hanukkah lighting during a protest at Jerusalem's Wailing Wall
Arts and Entertainment
The Bach Choir has been crowned the inaugural winner of Sky Arts’ show The Great Culture Quiz
arts + ents140-year-old choir declared winner of Sky Arts' 'The Great Culture Quiz'
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After another poor series in Sri Lanka, Alastair Cook claimed all players go through a lean period
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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
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Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas